10-Year-Old: 1; El Capitan: 0

Selah Schneiter becomes youngest documented person to climb El Capitan's 'Nose route'
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 18, 2019 4:03 AM CDT
Girl, 10, Makes History on El Capitan
This Jan. 14, 2015 file photo shows El Capitan in Yosemite National Park, Calif.   (AP Photo/Ben Margot, File)

A 10-year-old has conquered the massive rock wall that is El Capitan, a dangerous challenge even for rock-climbing legends. Selah Schneiter, whose climbing-guide father had her in harnesses soon after she could walk, had dreamed of scaling the 3,000-foot granite rock face in Yosemite National Park since she was 6 or 7, and finally put in a hard five days' work last week, reports the Fresno Bee. "There were a few times where I would be sore and tired and sunburned, and that would kind of get me going a little bonkers. But overall, it was just great to be up there away from the world," says Selah, whose dream was achieved at 5:45pm on June 12. She's the youngest documented person to climb El Capitan's "Nose route," up the center of the rock face, according to Outside, which reports an 11-year-old boy climbed the same route twice in 2001.

The climb—involving aid and free climbing, and ropes for protection—was extra special for Selah since it was the first one her parents did together, per ABC News. "The family history behind it really made me want to have this experience, and feel the way that my mom and my dad felt when they were up there together," she tells the Bee. "She was just so upbeat … she just kept plugging away," adds dad Mike Schneiter, who guides out of Colorado. He accompanied his daughter—camping out on a portaledge (essentially a hanging cot)—along with family friend Mark Regier. And while Selah found the whole endeavor rather difficult, she says "it doesn’t take necessarily a super special person to do something like that. You have to put your mind to it." Once at the top, however, her mind drifted. "I want pizza," she said, per Outside. "I've been dreaming about it forever." (More rock climbing stories.)

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